Music Feed

Where Words Fail Music Speaks

Guitar2Who doesn’t know someone – or a lot of people – who informally use music for therapy? A friend of mine has a plaque on his kitchen wall near where his daughter who has severe disabilities often sits to use her switch activated devices and toys. The plaque is homey and simple but the words are powerful. It reads: Where Words Fail Music Speaks. My friend discovered years ago that playing his guitar for his daughter could connect them on a very basic level as well as bring both of them joy.

Read full article on HealthCentral about the power of music for people who need an alternative to words:

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“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

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8 Lessons of Dementia Caregiving

Journal1Most of us find, as we travel our unique journeys, that certain phrases or concepts take on the status of truth in our world view. Our personal truths may not be identical to those of others, but we know what is true for us. Below, I've shared, as food for thought, a few of my own truths that have developed during my personal caregiving journey.

Read full article on Agingcare about lessons learned in caregiving:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Group Singing Offers Multiple Benefits for People with Dementia

Guitar3Recently, I wrote about how playing in an orchestra has helped  people living with dementia renew their confidence in themselves.  Another twist on music has now come in a recent report from the British Psychological Society's Division of Clinical Psychology in London. The researchers describe how both the people in their study who had dementia, as well as their caregivers, benefitted from group singing.This exercise seemed to have much the same effect on the people with the dementia as the orchestra experiment.

Read more on HealthCentral about how group singing care help care partners relate:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


People with Dementia Find Renewed Confidence While Playing in Orchestra

Violin1Alzheimer’s is a global issue that is on track to bankrupt worldwide health systems if a cure is not found. Therefore, funding for research is paramount, not just for those who have the disease but for future generations, as well. However, large numbers of the people who have Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia at this time are trying to make the point that it is equally important to put imagination, research and funding into how to care for those who already have this incurable disease.  

Read more on HealthCentral about how playing in an orchestra has helped people coping with Alzheimer's:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders of Minding Our Elders e-mail Carol

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling 


Specialized Music Therapy for Alzheimer's and Other Types of Dementia

Guitar2..Fridays at the nursing home were very popular. Regular music groups would come by at the week’s end to play old favorites for the residents, always filling the room with cheer. My dad, who had dementia caused by failed surgery, loved the live music but also responded well to CDs of his favorites from the big band era. I know that his quality of life during his last ten years would have been diminished without music to help override the effects of dementia.

Read more on Agingcare about specialized music therapy for people with dementia:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


Specialized Music Therapy for Alzheimer's and Other Types of Dementia

ReverieHarpCredit...Fridays at the nursing home were very popular. Regular music groups would come by at the week’s end to play old favorites for the residents, always filling the room with cheer. My dad, who had dementia caused by failed surgery, loved the live music but also responded well to CDs of his favorites from the big band era. I know that his quality of life during his last ten years would have been diminished without music to help override the effects of dementia.

Read more on Agingcare about specialized music therapy for people with dementia:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling

Harp Image Amazon.com


Group Singing Offers Multiple Benefits for People with Dementia

Piano...Why would we be surprised? People with dementia are not less intelligent after they develop the disease than they were before. They aren’t less talented. They aren’t less in any way except that portions of their brains are being damaged so that they can’t always function well in the world as we know it. Anything that can level the playing field for people with dementia is bound to give them joy and renewed confidence.

Read more on HealthCentral about the benefits of group singing for people with dementia:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders of Minding Our Elders e-mail Carol

Global Alzheimer’s Study Now Enrolling


People with Dementia Find Renewed Confidence While Playing In Orchestra

Guitar4Alzheimer’s is a global issue that is on track to bankrupt worldwide health systems if a cure is not found. Therefore, funding for research is paramount, not just for those who have the disease but for all generations. However, large numbers of the people who have Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia at this time are trying to make the point that it is equally important to put imagination, research and funding into how to care for those who already have this incurable disease.

Read more on HealthCentral about how engaging in the arts helps the brain and the spirit:

Support a caregiving friend at Christmas with a gift of Minding Our Elders


Hearing Loss: Causes, Protections and Treatments

BirdsflockHearing loss is a problem for millions of aging boomers. What many people don’t know is that hearing loss is more than in inconvenience. Hearing loss increases the risk of developing dementia. 

Read more on HealthCentral about Hearing loss:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer


Music Therapy for Alzheimer's and Other Dementias

Guitar2Music therapy has come into its own during the last decade as caregivers, care facilities and hospice organizations have recognized the therapeutic power that music can have on ill and suffering people. This therapy has been successfully delivered by a single staff member playing a guitar for a residents’ sing-along, a specialized harpist playing for a hospice patient or downloaded playlists on iPods that can stimulate memories. 

Continue reading on HealthCentral about how music can help people with dementia:

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Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders e-mail Carol: